Stratford, ON -- Doors Open Stratford presents 12 local sites commemorating 70 years since the end of World War II. Open to the public on Saturday, June 6 from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm, everyone is invited to visit some of Stratford’s finest landmarks and share our WWII stories. Admission is free.
|The Dutch memorial was a gift from the Netherlands in appreciation for Stratford’s hospitality to 700 Dutch soldiers in Stratford.|
Hear stories about Perth County War Brides, the Dutch Liberation and wing spar production for deHaviland Mosquito bombers as you tour historical sites, visit two private post-war homes, an historic church, war graves and Stratford’s Cenotaph, designed by one of Canada’s most prominent sculptors, Walter Seymour Allward.
“Our theme, Peace Returns: Reflections of 1945 has resonated deeply in the community and the Doors Open committee is pleased to bring the many partners together for this commemoration on June 6,” states Ernestine McKenna, Doors Open chair.
The Stratford Perth Museum hosts the Anne Frank Exhibition opening June 6 and running through until October 12.
Begin your journey at the newest addition to preserving our heritage, Stratford-Perth Archives (4273 Huron Road West- Hwy 8) with a ribbon cutting ceremony taking place at 9:30 am. Make your way to Stratford’s City Hall, a National Historic site located in the heart of our designated heritage downtown to view a Perth County War Brides display in the newly renovated council chamber. Stop by the Stratford Armoury, built in 1905 and home of the Perth Regiment for many years, St. James Anglican Church, with connections to the Royal Family and the Perth Regiment and the Royal Canadian Legion for tours. Learn about Stratford’s cenotaph and our connections to the Netherlands at the Dutch Memorial.
Tour quintessential post-war homes and meander through the Avalon subdivision including Normandy, Glastonbury, Coriano, Somerset and Mercer Streets. Stop by Festival Furniture where former Imperial Rattan produced wing spars, rattan gun mats and furniture for military use employing 200 people on war contracts. Pay your respects to those who fought as you view the new soldier’s section of Avondale Cemetery.
Visit the VIA Rail station and learn the importance of the trains in the movement of troops and supplies during periods of war from the Stratford Perth Heritage Foundation volunteers. Be sure to visit the upper level to see the 3rd Rail Society’s repurposed use of space. The Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans will present displays of branch member veteran memorabilia and serving complimentary refreshments throughout the day.
Doors Open Stratford is presented by the Stratford Tourism Alliance with support from MacLeods Scottish Shop, Stratford Perth Heritage Foundation, the City of Stratford and volunteers from the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario-Stratford Perth County branch, Heritage Stratford and the Stratford-Perth Archives along with community volunteers and generous site owners. Anyone wishing to volunteer at a site on June 6 is invited to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 519-271-5140.
Doors Open is a free event supported by Ontario Heritage Trust encouraging heritage property visits across Ontario with the first event taking place in 2000. This year, Stratford is one of 45 communities across the province opening their doors and sharing their history.
For more information on Doors Open and to view other events happening throughout the Stratford Heritage Weekend, go to www.visitstratford.ca/doorsopen.